Inspired by reports on Comet Lovejoy here on the forum, and a total disinterest in the 'Comet of the Century', I decided that I was going to see this comet at least. Lovejoy was about 18 degrees above the Northwestern horizon.
I set up the telescope before it got dark and waited for the stars I needed to fix the position of the comet to appear. While waiting I did a Solar System align on Venus, and took a look at its bright, thick crescent.
Eventually the stars of Boötes appeared with Arcturus very low on the horizon. The last 2 stars of the handle of the Plough/Dipper point to Seginus or gamma Boötis. Lovejoy was between that star and Nekkar or beta Boötis, the 'top star' of the constellation. I found it in binoculars straight away. It is lovely fuzzy with a greenish tinge, and a faint tail about a degree across. Within the tail was a thin brighter spike. The tail itself had very distinct edges.
I used the f6.3 focal reducer, and aligned the telescope on Polaris and Altair, and easily found the comet. In the telescope it was a grey fuzzy with a central core slightly to one side. It was about 14 ' across. I fixed the Canon to the telescope an did about 20 x 30s exposures with a 135mm lens giving the following image when stacked, and cropped.
On 1st December, Lovejoy will be right next to Nekkar. Just bear in mind that unless you live at a higher latitude than 40 degrees, Lovejoy won't rise until the early hours of the morning. For an evening observation, on this occasion, the higher the latitude, the better.
Chocky the cat spent most of her time climbing a tree where she knows several pigeons roost. On this occasion, however, they put up a fight, and she was the one to run off. That is unusual. Perhaps there was something bigger in the tree than a pigeon!!
Location: North West Devon, UK
Celestron Nexstar8i (8" SCT).
Celestron Skymaster binoculars 15x70
Other:0.63 & 0.33 correctors. X2 & X4 barlow.
Imagers: Meade DSI & Celestron NexImage. Canon EOS 550D